BMW X2 (2018-2023) Review & Prices

The BMW X2 is a compact SUV with a stylish body and a well-made interior but many alternatives are more comfortable and better at carrying lots of tall passengers

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6/10
Reviewed by Carwow after extensive testing of the vehicle.

What's good

  • Sporty styling
  • Intuitive infotainment system
  • Fun to drive

What's not so good

  • Quite expensive for a small SUV
  • Pretty uncomfortable around town
  • No Android Auto smartphone mirroring

Find out more about the BMW X2 (2018-2023)

Is the BMW X2 a good car?

The BMW X2 combines the practicality of an SUV with the slinky styling you’d expect to find on a smaller hatchback or coupe. It shares most of its mechanical bits with the BMW X1, but you can easily tell them apart thanks to the X2’s more rakish styling and dramatically sloping roofline.

The X2 has a set of gaping vents cut into the front bumper, some sporty side skirts and funky squared-off wheelarches that look like BMW’s designers set aside their compasses and started drawing with a Spirograph instead.

Step inside and things get much less in-your-face. The sensible dashboard layout, clear and concise instruments and soft-touch materials make the X2’s interior feel plush and intuitive in equal measure.

You also won’t have any trouble getting comfortable, whether you’re very short or tall enough for a career in professional basketball, thanks to the X2’s ample seat and steering wheel adjustment.

The infotainment display is another highlight thanks to its crisp screen, simple rotary dial controller and standard sat-nav that’s much easier to program than those in the Jaguar E-Pace and Volvo XC40.

The BMW X2 is a bit like a Converse shoe – and not just because of the huge badges on its backside. It isn’t as rugged as a hiking shoe or as sporty as a low-slung trainer, but it’s much more stylish

Much more taxing, however, is carrying passengers in the X2’s rather dark and dingy back seats. There’s a decent amount of space for two sub-six-footers to get comfy, but anyone taller will struggle for headroom and there isn’t a great deal of shoulder space for carrying three passengers at once. At least the X2’s boot is fairly spacious at up to 470 litres, so you’ll have no trouble packing in a week’s worth of luggage for your next family holiday, even if most alternatives offer more space.

If you are planning on using your X2 for long family road trips, you’ll want to avoid M Sport models with their lowered, stiffened suspension. Sure, this makes them pretty nimble for a tall(ish) SUV in corners, but you’ll feel every bump through your seat on rough roads and in town. Thankfully, the optional adaptive suspension helps neuter the X2’s harsh suspension – especially at higher speeds – but you’ll still hear a fair bit of wind and tyre noise on motorways.

Things are quieter around town, especially if you pick one of the petrol hybrids over the standalone petrol engines. But you’ll still have trouble navigating your way through traffic because the X2’s tiny rear windscreen and chunky door pillars create lots of awkward blind spots.

At least you get plenty of driver assistance systems to help keep you safe, and you can bolster the X2’s city-cruising credentials if you pay extra for traffic-jam assist that’ll accelerate, brake and even steer for you at speeds up to 37mph.

This all makes the X2 a stylish small SUV that’s worth considering – especially if you’re looking for something fun to drive that’ll stand out from the crowd. However, if you’re more interested in something comfortable and roomy enough to bring four friends along, there are better alternatives out there.

Should the BMW X2 tick all the right boxes for you, though, you can check out the latest BMW X2 deals to find out how much you could save when buying through carwow, as well as other new BMW models. We also have great used BMW deals, and if you want to sell your car, you can do that through carwow.

How much is the BMW X2?

The price of a used BMW X2 (2018-2023) on Carwow starts at £14,600.

There are three trim levels to choose from when buying an X2. ‘Core’ choices are Sport and M Sport. They have broadly the same standard features but are differentiated visually. M Sport models have a bodykit of deeper bumpers and side skirts, a rear spoiler, bigger wheels and two exhaust tailpipes.

Sport and M Sport are available with the same engines – 18i and 20i petrols and the 25e plug-in hybrid (the higher the number, the more power the engine has). The 18i has a manual gearbox as standard, the rest are automatic. Four-wheel drive (BMW calls it xDrive) is optional on the 20i, standard on the and 25e.

At the top of the range, there’s the high performance M35i. Again, it has largely the same equipment as the other trim levels, but looks even more muscular and has 306hp. An automatic gearbox and four–wheel-drive help it sprint from 0-62mph in just 4.9 seconds.

Alternatives to the X2 include the Jaguar E-Pace, Range Rover Evoque, Volvo XC40, Mercedes GLA and Lexus UX. The Lexus costs just a few pounds less than the BMW, the rest cost considerably more. However, it’s worth pointing out that the cars’ standard features don’t exactly match. Speccing them all with the same features may close the price gap. 

Performance and drive comfort

The BMW X2 feels great to drive, but it’s not the most comfortable of cars on bumpy roads

In town

The X2 is a compact size but your ability to nip around town is hindered by visibility that isn’t great. The view out of the front is fine, especially as you’re sat higher up than you would be in a hatchback. However, the huge rear pillars create a large blind spot and the back window is tiny. Seeing what’s behind you when manoeuvring is tricky. Standard front and rear parking sensors help; a reversing camera is optional.

It’s easy to find a good driving position. The driver’s seat and steering wheel adjust forwards and backwards, and up and down, so you can position them exactly where you want them. The seats are good and comfy, too, although the suspension is rather firm in M Sport models and the M35i performance model. They thump over bumps and holes in the road, rather than ride over them, so you get jiggled and bounced around. Sport models have softer suspension, giving a smoother ride. If you really value comfort, the Lexus UX or Volvo XC40 may suit you better.

If you drive in town a lot, the plug-in hybrid X2 25e is the best bet. It can go up to 33 miles on battery power so you can ride around in silence while creating no emissions. If you can’t stretch to that, the front-wheel-drive sDrive18i will be an efficient choice. Spec it with an automatic gearbox for really easy driving. 

On the motorway

The firm ride of M Sport and M35i models can still be an issue on motorways. However, if you get the optional adaptive dampers, you can soften the suspension at the touch of a button for a much more settled journey.

Other than that, the X2 is a fine car for travelling long distances. It’s nice and quiet, and the seats are unlikely to cause aches, although the Jaguar E-Pace and Range Rover Evoque do feel a little more luxurious.

All of the available engines have enough power to rapidly get up to 70mph, though the more powerful options feel less strained maintaining that speed.

On a twisty road

BMWs always feel great to drive on a winding country road and the X2 is no different. It’s certainly better than any of the alternatives. The steering is responsive and accurate, there’s loads of grip, the body stays resolutely upright in corners and the suspension doesn’t bounce off bumps, especially if you get the optional adaptive suspension.

All the engines are powerful enough to make rapid progress cross-country, and both the manual and automatic gearboxes help you get the best out of the engine. The high-performance M35i model is inevitably the fastest and most fun to drive. You can have a really good time driving the X2, but you might have a better time driving the BMW 1 Series hatchback thanks to its lower centre of gravity.

Space and practicality

Practicality is good, given the sporty styling, although rear seat space and comfort is predictably impacted

There’s pretty generous space in the front seats of the X2. Someone over six feet tall should have enough leg and headroom, and loads of shoulder room, too. Be aware, though, that you feel cocooned in the X2 – if you’re tall it might not feel as spacious as it is. The Volvo XC40 and, indeed, BMW’s own X1 (which is very closely related to the X2) feel more open.

Storage space around the front seats is pretty good. The door bins hold a large drinks bottle, there’s a deep cubby hole under the centre armrest, a pair of cupholders in the centre console, a phone tray in front of the gear lever and a biggish glovebox.

Space in the back seats

The X2’s low roofline impacts space in the back. If you’re of average height, there’s plenty of headroom, but anyone much taller may find their head touching the ceiling. There’s not much light, so the back is kind of dark and dingy, too, which doesn’t do much for the sense of space. At least there’s plenty of legroom.

The back seat is a bit too narrow for three adults (as in pretty much every car this size) but three kids should be fine. Though smaller ones may not be able to see out of the small, high windows. There are two sets of ISOFIX mounts in the back and another on the front passenger seat, but the back doors don’t open very wide, which mars what would otherwise be a very easy installation.

For storage, there are large door bins, nets on the back of the front seats and cupholders concealed in the armrest.

Overall, the X2 has a decent amount of passenger space but, if that’s your main priority, you’ll be better off with a Volvo XC40 or BMW X1.    

Boot space

Considering a sloping roofline usually has a negative impact on boot space, the X2 can hold a surprisingly large amount of stuff. Capacity is 470 litres, which is enough to swallow everything you’re likely to need for a week-long family holiday.

The boxier BMW X1 has 500 litres of space – the 30-litre difference amounts to a couple of shopping bags in practice. It's worth noting, though, that luggage space in the plug-in hybrid models is 60 litres smaller.

The Volvo XC40 has up to 586 litres, the Audi Q3 has 530 litres, and the Mercedes GLA has 495 litres available, so although the X2 has a pretty usable space, it isn't near the offerings of alternatives.

The loading lip is a little high, which might make it tricky to haul in heavier stuff. On the plus side, there’s a height-adjustable boot floor (at the higher level, there’s a large extra storage space below) and the back seats fold down easily if you need to carry anything really big and bulky.

Interior style, infotainment and accessories

The layout and usability is good, although the cabin styling could be more, well, stylish, and the infotainment isn't BMW's most cutting-edge system

The X2’s interior is best described as functional. Pretty much every alternative has an interior with more style, more wow-factor – the Range Rover Evoque in particular. Still, inside the X2 the dashboard layout is clear, simple and user-friendly. And you can really feel the quality of everything you touch.

It’s been around for a while now and the X2 hasn’t yet been updated with BMW’s latest infotainment tech. The display is a relatively small 8.8 inches but the system is packed with features – sat nav, Bluetooth, DAB radio and assorted apps. The system’s also compatible with Apple CarPlay but not Android Auto (every alternative is compatible with both).

Other standard features include air-con, cruise control, four electric windows, and front and rear parking sensors. 

MPG, emissions and tax

The X2 gives pretty good fuel economy for this type of car. The petrol-powered 18i can do an official 45mpg, the 20i can do 43mpg and the high-performance M35i can do 36mpg.

CO2 emissions range from 135-179g/km, low enough that vehicle excise duty costs £165 from the car’s first birthday. If the car costs more than £40,000 when brand new, it incurs an extra annual charge of £520 from its second to sixth birthdays.

The plug-in hybrid makes the most sense for company car drivers. You probably won’t get anywhere near the official 166mpg average, though you should see economy similar to or even better than the diesels, which are now only available on the used market. So long as you keep the batteries fully charged (which only takes a couple of hours) to maximise the 33 miles of electric range. Perhaps more pertinently, CO2 emissions of 41g/km mean the benefit-in-tax rates are low.

Safety and security

The X2 hasn’t itself been assessed by car safety experts Euro NCAP. However, they did assess the BMW X1 in 2015 and, because the two cars are so closely related, the X1’s five-star rating, which is now out of date as standards increase, applies to the X2. Very high marks were awarded for protecting adult and child occupants in a crash.

Many airbags and automatic emergency braking are fitted as standard. Adaptive cruise control is optional, as well, but that’s about it for high-tech safety features – the X2 is quite an old design.

Reliablity and problems

BMWs are very well made and generally reliable, however small issues that require a trip to the garage to rectify can crop up. BMW provides a three-year/unlimited mileage warranty if anything goes wrong. A few recalls have been issues for the X2, but those don’t affect brand new cars. Issues highlighted in a recall are fixed free of charge by the manufacturer.

Buy or lease the BMW X2 (2018-2023) at a price you’ll love
We take the hassle and haggle out of car buying by finding you great deals from local and national dealers
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£14,600
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